An SNP MSP has said it would be "unwise and unnecessary" of the party's Holyrood group to withdraw the whip from former cabinet minister Fergus Ewing.

Michelle Thomson, SNP MSP for Falkirk East, who was Kate Forbes campaign manager in the SNP leadership election, made her comments today and suggested that there was a new mood of openness to debate in the party.

"I think it would be unwise and unnecessary in ideal circumstances. Dialogue's absolutely everything because, I don't perceive, me going about my business that there's still a split. 

"What I perceive is that the situation that existed formerly, where there wasn't the same freedom to discuss, is changing. and it's that is the positive thing that I'm highlighting. I don't sense myself, even though, you know, as you know, I was Kate's campaign manager, that I experience any animosity," she told the Holyrood Sources podcast.

READ MORE: What’s Humza Yousaf going to do about Fergus Ewing?

Deputy First Minister Shona Robison refused to say on Sunday if Mr Ewing will be disciplined following a series of rebellions in recent months.

On Friday, The Herald revealed that the former rural affairs secretary faced being suspended from the SNP's Holyrood group for a "few weeks" for supporting a Conservative motion of no confidence in the circular economy minister Lorna Slater back in June.

The paper was told the party's MSPs would decide on the matter but that the group was not expected to make a decision at its meeting in parliament this week. Indeed no decision was made on the matter when SNP MSPs gathered for their weekly meeting yesterday.

Meanwhile, the Times also reported the party on Friday Mr Ewing would lose the whip though the paper did not say for how long.

The Herald: SNP MSP Michelle Thomson

The Conservative motion of no confidence in Ms Slater was brought to Holyrood after the company set up to run Scotland's deposit return recycling scheme called in the administrators, putting scores of jobs on the line.

SNP leader and First Minister Humza Yousaf refused to say if he would take action against Mr Ewing at the time.

However in an interview earlier this month with the Daily Record, Mr Yousaf confirmed disciplinary proceedings against Mr Ewing were ongoing and described the breach of conduct in voting for the no no confidence motion in Ms Slater as "very serious".

In the same podcast, broadcast today, Ms Thomson was also asked about what the political fallout would be if SNP lose next month's Rutherglen and Hamilton West by election.

She said: "If the by-election doesn't go our way, it has to be a trigger for accelerated change." 

She added that the Bute House Agreement with the Scottish Greens should be discussed again, now that voters have a better understanding of it.